The Fundamentals of Microwave Radio is for Microwave Networks and its Channel Partner employees. This course describes basic operations of microwave radio. It is an introductory course designed for those who are new to microwave radio communications.

Learning Objectives

Understand basic concepts about

  • microwave radio operations
  • essential parts of microwave radio systems
  • microwave communications applications

Target Audience

The course is designed for personnel at Microwave Networks and its channel partners who are new to microwave radio communications.


Personnel should have a rudimentary understanding radio communications and data networking.  


Class Size:

up to 8

Course Duration:

1/2 day


Stafford, TX or partner location



Materials Provided:

Digital and hardcopy course presentations and data sheets (USB), including glossary of microwave radio communications

Course Topics

Basic Radio:

  • Electromagnetic Spectrum and Radio Waves
  • Licensed and Unlicensed Frequencies and FCC Regulation
  • Microwave and Millimeter Spectrum
  • Decibels and Measurement – Power Output and Receive Sensitivity
  • Carrier and Modulation
  • Bandwidth and Capacity
  • TDM and IP and Ethernet
  • North American Digital Hierarchy
  • Plesiochronous Digital Hierarchy
  • Ethernet

Microwave Hardware Configurations

  • Point-to-Point and Point-to-Multipoint
  • Architecture – Indoor and Split Mount
  • Antenna Systems, Coaxial Cable, Waveguides
  • Video examples of a radio shelter, racks, microwave tower, and antenna system

Microwave Frequency and Propagation

  • Microwave Frequency Bands and Characteristics
  • Polarization
  • Propagation: free space loss, absorption, refraction, scattering, reflection, diffraction
  • Fresnel Zones, LOS, non-LOS
  • BER, AGC, System Gain, Fade Margins
  • Link Budgeting

Network Topologies, Protection, and Diversity

  • Understanding Microwave Block Diagrams
  • Topologies Overview: star, chain, mesh, ring, spur
  • Access, Backhaul, Transport
  • Hot Standby (1+1 versus 1+0 versus 1+n)
  • Route Diversity
    • SHARP – TDM
    • Rapid Ring Protection – Ethernet
    • Space Diversity

Benefits and Applications

  • Benefits of Microwave Radio Communications versus copper, fiber, satellite
  • Public Safety & Government
  • Utilities
  • Industrial
  • Mobile Network Operators

Download the PDF – Fundamentals of Microwave Radio